Shit gets the realest it has ever gotten, but let me tell you now: if you are looking for quick and easy resolutions, you will not be finding them here. In fact, the trouble has only just begun.
I’m not sure where Tywin and Jaime are holed up exactly, so we’ll just lump it in with the rest of the goings on in King’s Landing, since that’s what they’re most directly related to anyway. Tywin Lannister, patriarch of the house, is badass (and again perfectly cast). We’re introduced to him out in the field with his men, dressing his own game. It does not get manlier than that my friends. He doesn’t give a whit for honour either, only the strength and integrity of his house, and he will do anything to maintain it. So instead of heeding Ned Stark’s summons to court, he sends Jaime off to Riverrun, the ancestral home of the Tully (Catelyn, Ned’s wife, family) with a hundred men to exact vengeance for her kidnapping of Tyrion. Clearly no one has got the memo that he is free.
Ned for some reason decides it’s a good idea to go to Cersei with the information that he knows about her incest, which is probably the biggest mistake he could make. The real Cersei again makes an appearance, and her hatred of Lyanna and her husband is made plain. Ned threatens her, tells her to take the children and run before Robert comes back, because he doesn’t want their blood on his hands. Cersei doesn’t seem to give a damn for his threats, and pretty much threatens him back. But Ned of course doesn’t believe that women can have “wroth” and ignores her, trusting she’ll do the “right thing” aka what he tells her to.
We get an um, enlightening scene with Baelish and his whores. A”whore audition” so to speak. With Roz! Who apparently hitched a ride on a magical turnip cart that can get to King’s Landing almost instantaneously! And of course she is giving it all up for the audience, and we get a jolly fisting scene while Petyr reveals important information about his past, who he is, and his relationship with Catelyn Tully. Needless to say I found this scene completely gratuitous, because the sex was pretty much unnecessary. AND distracting. Even Swidgen knows that you give your important monologues when the whore is giving you a blowjob, not when they’re doing their own thing off in the corner, moaning like crazy. I am pretty sure that use of whores in TV 101. The people who made Deadwood should have taught a class on it.
Anyway, King Robert coincidentally gets gored by a boar on his hunt, which of course throws Ned’s plan on its ass. He can’t tell him about his children and wife now, not when he’s dying. He directs Ned to write his will, and puts Ned in charge of the realm until Joffrey is of age. Ned does the only thing he can do at this point, and write “my rightful heir” instead of Joffrey’s name. A lot of people on the interwebs were thinking this was completely dishonourable, but when you think about it, it completely follows his own code. He can’t serve a king when he knows he’s not the rightful heir, which Joffrey’s not. It goes completely against his code of ethics. THAT’S why he changes the will. Robert also directs Ned to stop the hit on Daenarys.
Ned is left to leave his friend to die in peace, and Ser Barristan tells him the king was gored because of all the wine he was drinking. Varys cannily asks who gave it to him, and of course it was Terrible Hair Lannister, his squire! If he gets a promotion too then we know something is up with that. Ned also finds out it’s too late to do anything about Daenarys. Renly also tries to get Ned on his side, to steal Joffrey away from his mother and rule through him. But Ned would rather back Stannis since he’s the older Baratheon brother and next in line, and Renly reveals his true intentions to rule. Ned still says no, and has faith in his piece of paper that names him Lord Protector. He also sends off another piece of paper to Stannis proclaiming Joffrey’s illegitimacy, and makes plans for a coup of his own. He tells Baelish of his plan, and he counsels him instead to make peace with the Lannisters and take the position as Joffrey’s Lord Protector. It would make him the most powerful man in the kingdom, and Baelish would have no problem getting rid of the boy later if he proved too troublesome. Of course Ned is not behind this plan at all either. Instead he asks Baelish to get the city watch on his side for when he makes his announcement to arrest Joffrey and Cersei, and Baelish seems to agree to it.
Ned is then summoned to the throne room buy Joffrey, but Renly and the Tyrells have already jumped ship. Cersei has also named herself Queen Regent in the 5 seconds since Robert has died, and Joffrey orders Ned to swear fealty to him. Ned instead gives Ser Barristan the will naming him Lord Protector, and Cersei gets her revenge on Ned for his threats by tearing it up and ordering his arrest. Most of the bannermen look pretty confused, especially when Ned then calls on the Gold Cloaks to arrest the Queen, but unfortunately for him, Baelish has in fact sided with the Lannisters (which he all but told Ned anyhow), and the Watch turns on him instead. FOR SOME REASON HE IS STILL SURPRISED.
Another very brief scene at Winterfell, where Osha the Wilding is awesome, and gives Theon Greyjoy some lip (it must be his face because he really seems to bring this out in all the ladies). Even the Maester burns Theon pretty bad. Osha then tells the Maester why she’s come south, which is of course because she’s fleeing the white walkers, and again no one believes it.
Yaaaay more Samwell and Jon bromance! They’re keeping watch atop the wall when a lone horse returns to Castle Black. Sam adorably tries to remember how any horn blasts he’s supposed to sound, but Jon notices the horse is rider less. They let it in, and it turns out to be his Uncle Benjen’s horse, but his uncle his nowhere to be seen.
Sam and Jon also ‘graduate’ from their training and become full brother of the Night’s Watch. But Jon can’t enjoy it because he’s brooding about the disappearance of his uncle. Jon and Sam both choose to take their vows in the weirwood, Jon because the Starks actually do believe in the Old Gods and Sam because his own house and gods seem to have forsaken him, and because his loyalty now lies with Jon and the Watch (awwww!). Instead of being named a ranger, something he’s wanted since he was a kid, Jon is named to the stewards with Sam, and he is initially pissed and tries to leave in a huff. However, he’s to be the Lord Commander Mormont’s (yes he is related to Ser Jorah) steward, and Sam rightfully points out that it’s probably because the Lord Commander is grooming him to take his place. Sam then reveals that he didn’t dream of being a steward of the Night’s Watch either, and instead wanted to be a wizard (awwwww!), and Jon laughs and decides to stay.
Jon and Sam then go beyond the wall to the weirwood to give their super depressing vow against fun at the heart tree, and Jon’s wolf Ghost suddenly appears as they’re finishing with a severed hand, further dampening the ‘celebratory’ mood. Whose hand is it? Well, we’re not going to find out until next time we visit the Wall. Probably. Maybe.
We get a nice domestic scene with Dany and Drogo, where she braids his hair and tries to convince him to invade the Seven Kingdoms. You know, as you do. The Khal, however, still does believe in boats. Dany then goes to the market with her small retinue and Ser Jorah and voices her frustrations to him. He tells her it will happen when it’s meant to, and then sneaks off to check on his mail. Jorah finds out his job as spy is over when he is handed a pardon, and he quickly realizes what that means. Instead of allowing the assassination to proceed though, he instead stops the creepy wine merchant from poisoning Dany with a ‘gift’. Rhekaro takes the assassin out with his whip much like he did Viserys a few episodes ago.
Drogo is furious that someone tried to kill the “moon of [his] life” and proclaims then and there his intention to take vengeance on the Seven Kingdoms. They ride out the next day, the would-be poisoner dragging behind Dany’s horse, penis flopping in the wind.
- T&A: 2! Blood: 1 (if we count that deer I guess), and penises: 1. Rape is implied once, and outright promised once. Again this is the first time I have found any of it gratuitous though.
- Outfit of the week: Cersei in the throne room. Come on other characters, wear more different outfits!
- Aw, no Tyrion or Arya this week, but I have heard next week’s episode is called “Stick em with the pointy end” or something similar, so everyone’s favourite spunky 11 year old will be back!